Association of Liberal Democrat Councillors

Draft Press Release: Brownfield Land: Minister fails to offer help to Councils

All housing articles
Friday, 29th July, 2016

Terraced housing Terraced housing

Thanks to Tony Greaves for the template press release below, which could be adapted for use in your area.

Lib Dems ‘Disappointed’ by Minister’s Response to Brownfield Question

Tony Greaves said he was disappointed by the response from the Government Minister when he asked about their policy on housing development on brownfield land in areas like Pendle, even though the Minister said, “I endorse the good work done by Pendle Council on brownfield sites.”

Pendle based Liberal Democrat peer Lord Greaves had told Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth that while the new policy of setting up local registers of brownfield land is welcome, “they do nothing to bring forward brownfield land in areas where building houses in brownfield sites is not financially viable, such as where I live in East Lancashire.”

Lord Greaves, who is Deputy Leader of Pendle Borough Council, told the Government that in areas like Pendle the housing market is so depressed “that to develop brownfield land in areas such as this where the market is not viable, gap funding is required.”

He asked: “What are they doing to help local authorities provide such gap funding?”

The Minister pointed out some sources of funding which Pendle was already applying for, but did not give any assurance that any gap funding would be forthcoming.

Lord Greaves said after the short debate: “I was disappointed but I will keep pressing the case for areas such as ours, of which there are many across the north of England. The problem is that based in London the
Government and their civil servants just do not understand that new housing on many brownfield sites in these areas will not happen unless there is a public subsidy to bridge the funding gap.

ENDS

The full exchanges on brownfield land can be found at:https://hansard.parliament.uk/lords/2016-07-21/debates/16072156000624/PlanningBrownfieldSites

 

Claire Halliwell